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The Lens

The city of New Orleans has hired Peter Bowen, the former general manager of major short-term rental operator Sonder, as the city’s new deputy chief administrative officer of land use. In his new position, Bowen will manage and oversee major departments including the Department of Code Enforcement and the Department of Safety and Permits, whose long list of responsibilities includes short-term rental permitting and enforcement.

Michael Isaac Stein / The Lens

Attorneys for Darnley Hodge, the appointed compliance director who oversees the New Orleans jail, on Wednesday filed a lengthy opposition to a request by the city of New Orleans in federal court for permission to suspend planning for a new jail facility known as Phase III.

Michael Isaac Stein

Despite a local law requiring the city of New Orleans to post all of its contracts on its website, the city’s public-facing contract database hasn’t worked since December 2019, when the local government was hit with a cyber attack that severely debilitated operations.

Marta Jewson / The Lens

Members of the New Orleans City Council on Thursday initiated the process to renew a quarter-percent sales tax in the French Quarter that has funded Louisiana State Police patrols in and around the French Quarter for the past five years. The council members were meeting as the governing authority of the French Quarter Economic Development District.

Michael Isaac Stein / The Lens

For months prior to the city government’s announcement that it no longer intended to move forward with Phase III of the New Orleans jail — a proposed 89-bed facility that was intended to provide a space for people in custody with acute mental health needs, currently being held at a state prison — a group of advocates, health experts, and criminal justice actors was already meeting to discuss alternatives options.

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